Based on a recent report published by ESPN, Pat Summitt has decided to step aside as Tennessee’s coach of women’s basketball and received the title of “head coach emeritus” on Wednesday. Her place will be taken by assistant Holly Warlick who was promoted after Summitt’s announcement.
The decision seems to have come at an appropriate time as Pat Summitt told ESPN reporters that she was ready to make this step. Moreover, the 59-year-old coach will continue to support the women’s program because she invested a lot of time and effort so they could win eight titles. In her opinion, Warlick will do a great job as her replacement because she was her assistant for 27 years and one of the best players that Summitt ever had.
Pat Summitt might have continued to coach Tennessee, but her recent health issues would have prevented her from fulfilling her job tasks. Last year, she was diagnosed with early onset dementia caused by Alzheimer’s disease. She told reporters during the press conference that she loved being the coach of the Tennessee team for 38 years. Despite this, Summitt realized that it was time for her to move on and take on a new role.
Summitt promised that she will continue to support the stability of the program as a head coach emeritus and she will continue to teach life skills to Tennessee players. In addition, the head coach has founded the Pat Summitt Foundation Fund in order to help people suffering from Alzheimer to overcome their health problems.
Dave Hart, Tennessee’s vice chancellor and athletic director, told reporters that Summitt was an inspiration to everyone. He further stated that the 59-year-old coach’s contribution to the University of Tennessee was tremendous. In the end, he stated that Summitt is “a model of class and courage” due to the accomplishments she has made for the team.
The new Tennessee coach, Holly Warlick, will hold her first news conference on Thursday. Pat Summitt will also be present at the event which will be hosted in Knoxville.